Jaimee Hanna is 20 years old and recently graduated from college in the Pacific Northwest. She is Straight Up’s summer intern and is blogging regularly about her experiences with us.
Now that I’m fresh out of college, it’s time to get my feet wet! I’m so excited to be interning for Straight Up, a local non-profit that engages youth in creating social change regarding alcohol, impaired driving, marijuana use, and prescription drug misuse. Getting started
After months of anticipation, week 1 came and went in the blink of an eye. I had no idea that being so busy would be so fun and rewarding at the same time. During my first week I was fortunate enough to accompany Straight Up to Thousand Oaks High School to assist in putting on a prevention game show. Who knew that teaching students about tobacco, alcohol, and marijuana could be so fun? This game show wasn’t anything like the repetitive lectures I sat through in high school. Instead of being bored and feeling punished by the school system the kids actually enjoyed themselves. They broke into teams and the competitive cries and exploding laughter made me realize that this wasn’t just another lecture. The kids were really absorbing the information, asking in-depth questions about the material, and sharing their own experiences. After the week was complete we had reached about 150 students and it was so rewarding to think that I helped make an impact on these students’ lives.
Spreading the word
Then I got to thinking, what is the best way to get more teens aware of Straight Up and what we do? SOCIAL MEDIA. I created an Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest page for Straight Up to up our ante in outreach, awareness, and preventative efforts. If we can access more and more youth we can hopefully impact them as well. As for the rest of the week I decided to sort the millions of ideas flooding my brain for possible summer projects. I worked with Straight Up staff to finalize our favorites and to figure out the next steps in making my ideas into reality. Stay tuned — the adventure is just beginning!
Visit Straight Up’s social media accounts!